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Do away with dreadful SEA

By MARLENE AUGUSTINE Monday, March 10 2014

click on pic to zoom in
SCHOLAR: Top SEA student for 2013 Sandhya Sookhoo was a guest speaker at the awards ceremony. ...
SCHOLAR: Top SEA student for 2013 Sandhya Sookhoo was a guest speaker at the awards ceremony. ...

EDUCATION Minister Dr Tim Gopeesingh says he wants to “do away” with the Secondary Entrance Assessment (SEA) examination so students at such a young age would not have to go through the stress and trauma of sitting what basically is a make or break exam for secondary school places.

Gopeesingh made his feelings known yesterday at the SEA 2013 Awards Ceremony at the Trinidad Hilton, Port-of-Spain. “As Education Minister I wish I can do-away with this dreadful SEA Examination.

“The trial and tribulations of these young ones having to write a placement examination to try and get a place into the schools that they and their parents would like them to go to, because a lot of these schools are performing well,” Gopeesingh said.

Gopeesingh said it is the dream of every student to attend a school that is performing well, and his Ministry has been fighting with this issue with the placement of students. Gopeesingh yesterday said that Government schools are now improving, “but not as fast as we would like them to” and he is happy to see that a number of students awarded scholarships are products of Government schools as opposed to the so called ‘prestige schools’.

“When I came into office in 2010 there were a total of 26 Secondary Schools all board schools winning private scholarships and now there are 41 secondary schools winning national scholarships. “This means there is an improvement taking place in our government secondary schools and for that I feel very happy and reassured that all of our 134 secondary schools throughout Trinidad and Tobago can become the pride of every parent.”

Gopeesingh said he is open to suggestions for alternative forms of student placement in secondary schools so as to do away with the SEA exam.

The Minister congratulated all students and encouraged them to take their education to a higher level and the sky should no longer be the limit. The students were presented with trophies and certificate of Units from the Unit Trust Corporation (UTC).

Also speaking at the award ceremony was Sandhya Sookhoo who topped the 2013 SEA examination who said she could not have succeeded without the support, encouragement and love of her parents, teachers and classmates. She now attends the Naparima Girls High School.

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